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To The Best Of Our Knowledge is a nationally-syndicated, Peabody award-winning public radio show that dives headlong into the deeper end of ideas. We have conversations with novelists and poets, scientists and software engineers, journalists and historians, filmmakers and philosophers, artists and activists — people with big ideas and a passion to share them.

Updated: 1 hour 59 min ago

Pick Your Poison

Sat, 10/13/2018 - 1:00am

Covert spies painting nerve agents on doorknobs? It's not the only way to poison someone. We hear stories of radioactive paint, formaldehyde-spiked baby formula, and a beautiful garden full of plants that could kill you.

Guests: Deborah BlumKathryn HarkupAmy StewartKate Moore

Categories: Syndicated

What's Wrong With Men? [Rebroadcast]

Sat, 10/06/2018 - 1:00am

The right-wing politics and bro culture of The Proud Boys is attracting young, white men nationwide. Founder Gavin McInnes believes “95% of American women” would be happier at home. Where does his vision of “being a man” fit in 2018?

Guests:

Gavin McInnesAlexandra HallKyle “Guante” Tran MyhreWarren FarrellAshanti Branch

Categories: Syndicated

Listening to the City

Sat, 09/29/2018 - 1:00am

Cities can be cacophonous and loud, a chaos of sonic discord. If, that is, you don't really focus your listening. People who’ve trained their ears to hear urban soundscapes in new ways hear something different.

Guests:

David Rothenberg
David Haskell
Aaron Henkin
Wendel Patrick
Jennifer Stoever
Pierre Schaeffer
Vivienne Corringham

Interviews in this hour:

Deep Listening with Electric Ears
Listening To Trees As Fellow Citizens
Hearing Baltimore Block By Block
Can You Hear Segregation and Intolerance?
The City, The Original Music Sample Bed
Singing The Song of a City

Categories: Syndicated

Magical Thinking [Rebroadcast]

Sat, 09/22/2018 - 1:00am

"Magical thinking" gets a bad rap these days. It suggests losing your grip on reality or being so gullible that you'll believe anything - from ghosts to miracles. But what if magic isn't pure fantasy? Maybe it's the gateway to wonder.  

Guests:

Nate Staniforth
Michael Muhammad Knight
Haleema Shah
Chloe Benjamin

Interviews in this hour:

From Stage Tricks to Real Magic: A Magician's Search for Wonder
Islam's Hidden History of Magic
Why Online Quizzes, Personality Tests and Horoscopes Help You Feel Special
Drawing Inspiration For The Fantastical From The Everyday

Categories: Syndicated

The Ways We Are Born — Again and Again

Sat, 09/15/2018 - 1:00am

If you think of your life as a series of births, what changes? The first birth is when you arrive here, as a wet, wiggling newborn. But there may be other transitions in your life that feel just as difficult and profound. Some people actually call those passages re-birth. But why does the birth metaphor matter?

This hour, we examine midwives, trans men, and born again Christians. Birth. Rebirth. And Born Again.

Interviews in this hour:

The Power of Choice When You're Giving Birth
Where Are the Midwives? 
Midwives in the Golden Age of Television
Transgender Men and the Remaking of Identity
"Happy In My Own Skin": The Transition from Bess To Benn 
What Does it Really Mean to Be a Born Again Christian?

Categories: Syndicated

Rethinking David Foster Wallace

Sat, 09/08/2018 - 1:00am
Categories: Syndicated

What's Wrong With Work?

Sat, 09/01/2018 - 1:00am

It's not easy in America today to find work that matters, that’s meaningful, and that pays enough to live on. Which is the one thing we don’t talk about. What’s wrong with work — and how do we fix it?

Guests:

Alissa Quart
David Graeber
James Livingston
Niki Okuk
Studs Terkel

Interviews in this hour:

Even With Jobs, The Middle Class Is Feeling the Squeeze
We Joke About Some Jobs Being BS. But Is There An Epidemic Of Pointless Work? 
F*** Work
Fixing the Workplace By Handing It To The Workers
Studs Terkel on the Meaning of Work

Categories: Syndicated

ICYMI: Our Invisible, Treacherous, Cynical, Wise, Miraculous World

Mon, 08/27/2018 - 1:00am

Haven’t listened in a while? In case you missed it, here's a sampling of what we’ve heard on the show recently.

Shows featured:

Our Invisible Universe

Roadtrippin’

What Is School For? 

Against Cynicism

Loving Bees 

Categories: Syndicated

The Einstein You Don't Know [Extra]

Thu, 08/23/2018 - 6:17pm

There are the female scientists you can name, and the ones forgotten by history. Like Mileva Marić-Einstein. She might just have been more brilliant than Albert was — but we'll never know. 

Guests:

Marie Benedict

Categories: Syndicated

Being Sincere in a Cynical World

Sat, 08/11/2018 - 1:00am

Why is the world so damn cynical? Rather than surrendering to corrosive, hopeless snark, we look to some unexpected sources to make the case for sincerity.

Guests:

Jason Rohrer
Christy Wampole
Christian Picciolini
Ingrid LaFleur

Interviews in this hour:

"You Are Our Miracle": A Game To Make You Love Your Fellow Player
The Toll of Living Awash in Irony
Can You Change The Mind Of A White Supremacist?
Envisioning a Better Today Through The Tomorrows of Afrofuturism

Categories: Syndicated

The Best Of To The Best Of Our Knowledge in 2017

Fri, 08/10/2018 - 4:04pm

A taste of some of our best interviews from 2017.

Categories: Syndicated

Is Socialism Making a Comeback?

Sat, 08/04/2018 - 1:00am

It was a dirty word 25 years ago. But now, more and more people are identifying as Socialists…in America and on the ballot.

Guests:

Kshama Sawant
Sean Wilentz
Cheryl Blue
Andrew Haug
Erik Olin Wright
Brother Ali

Interviews in this hour:

How Socialism Won in Seattle
In Defense of Liberals
Milwaukee's Socialist Experiment
Rethinking Socialism for Today
Brother Ali on Islam, the Left, and Hip Hop

Categories: Syndicated

Jeff Kripal at the Edge of Belief [Extra]

Thu, 07/26/2018 - 4:00pm

Jeff Kripal is a highly original, even maverick, historian of religion. In this conversation — part of a collaboration with the LA Review of Books — Kripal takes Steve to where all the weird stuff we can’t explain lives ... or hides.

Guests:

Jeff Kripal

Categories: Syndicated

When Is A Road Trip Something More? [Rebroadcast]

Sat, 07/07/2018 - 1:00am

We take road trips and endless highways for granted, but there are other countries where people can pay a heavy price just for getting behind a wheel.

Guests:

Finn Murphy
Manal al-Sharif
Rebecca Solnit
Lawrence Ross
David Roberts
Simon Parkin

Interviews in this hour:

Put It In Boogie Gear On the Backslide
Driving While Female
What If We Forget How to Get Lost?
A Guidebook to the 'Blackest Road Trip Ever'
The Most Boring Video Game Ever Made

Categories: Syndicated

In Search of "Real" Food

Sat, 06/30/2018 - 6:30am

What if the guiding principle we used in cooking, eating and growing food was love? From an Iranian-American kitchen to the chocolate forests of Ecuador, we explore new ways to express deep flavors and personal identity through food and cooking.

Guests:

Simran Sethi
Samin Nosrat
Michael Twitty
Josh Noel

Interviews in this hour:

The Frightening Sameness Beneath Hundreds of Flavors
Kosher/Soul — Cooking the African-Jewish Diaspora
Anyone Can Cook—With the Right Elements 
Does "Selling Out" Make a Difference You Can Taste?

Categories: Syndicated